The renowned theologian and hadith scholar, Shaikh al-Hurr al-Amili
On 8th of the Islamic month of Rajab in 1033 AH, the renowned theologian and hadith scholar, Shaikh Abu Jafar Mohammad bin al-Hassan bin Ali bin al-Hussain al-Ameli al-Mashghari, popularly known as al-Hurr al-Amili, was born in the village of Mashghara in the Jabal Amel region of southern Lebanon.
His early education began with a family of teachers that included his father, his paternal uncle, his maternal grandfather Shaikh Abdus-Salaam bin Mohammad, and one of his father's maternal uncles, Shaikh Ali bin Mahmoud. He also studied under Hussain bin Hassan bin Yunus Zahir and Hassan bin Zain od-Din Ameli, who was the great-grandson of the Second Martyr. Hussain Zahir was the first to give him the “ijaza” (license) to teach and transmit hadith. He remained for the first forty years of his life in his homeland, performing the Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca twice and the Ziyarah to the holy shrines in Iraq.
He eventually journeyed to Mashhad, Iran, and settled there for the rest of his life as Shaikh al-Islam at the holy shrine of Imam Reza (AS), the 8th Infallible Successor of Prophet Mohammad (SAWA). On his way he stayed for a while in the Safavid capital, Isfahan, where he became acquainted with the famous Allama Mohammad Baqer Majlisi. The meeting between these two scholars left an impression on both of them, and Majlisi introduced Hurr al-Ameli to Shah Sulaiman Safavi.
He stayed in Mashhad for forty years and passed away at the age of 81 years. He was laid to rest in one of the portals of the holy shrine, where his grave is still the site of pilgrimage. He wrote numerous books including “Wasa'el ash-Shia”, which is a vast but concise compilation and classification of Hadith that took him 18 years to compose. Among his other famous works is “al-Jawaher as-Saniya fī'l-Ahadith al-Qudsiya”, and “Amal al-Amel fi Ulama Jabal al-Amel”, which is a biographical dictionary of Shi'ite Muslim scholars who originated from Jabal Amel.